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Monday, December 26, 2011

Ho! Ho! Ho! There's till no snow (part 2)

Well, I don't know about all of you, but the last week has been crazy!  We had full days of school through Dec. 22!  The excitement of Christmas, coupled with the flu, led to quite an eventful (and messy!) last day of school!  At least the temperature is in the MID-40's! making recess duty (and now cleaning my garage) not as unbearable as it could be!

Last time I shared some of my math related holiday activities. This time I will follow up with some literacy (and whatever I forgot before!) activities! Hope you enjoy (and get some ideas for next year!).

Literacy Centers
I called this "candy cane words".  The kids use paper candy cane pieces to spell names and sight words.  It's really interesting to see how they form some of the trickier letters out of the random pieces.  To make the pieces, I just printed red/white striped paper (pick up your copy HERE) and either cut different length strips for the "straight pieces" and then cut out several "o"'s using the die cut machine which I chopped into various portions to create curved pieces.

After the kids made a word, they had to record it on the recoding sheet.

At another center I the kids had a bag full of sight words, along with some Christmas Pictures (I think I got these from Victoria Smith at kinderkorner.com) and they had to use the words and pictures to make sentences.  My rule was that all the sentences could NOT follow the same pattern (I like, I like, etc.)

One of their favorite activities every year is going "shopping" for Christmas presents.  I print out small booklets that have a present with a letter in it on each page.  (Get yours HERE). I am lucky enough to have a copier that shrinks and creates booklets from regular sized sheets of paper!  If you don't, and don't want to print 26 sheets per kid, here is a condensed version.  Anyways, the kids look through toy catalogs and sale papers, and cut out "presents" and glue them on the correct page, based on what letter they start with.

I found a Christmas tree glyph from Shari Sloane's site that I modified and turned into an art center project.  We sponge painted the trees, and then used a scrap-booking circle punch to cut out the ornaments.  I was amazed at what a fine motor activity the hole punching turned into!

We made our own "Rudolph Rudolph" books (I got this idea from little giraffes) and the kids just loved how Rudolph's nose kept changing color, it rhymed, and had lots of sight words in it!  You can get your own copy here.  I imported mine into a Promethean board flip chart so we could ALL see and do word work together as well.  (Have I ever mentioned how much I LOVE my promethean board??)

We also made TLC type reindeer, which focuses on turning squares and rectangles into "art" while incorporating LOTS of math vocabulary (horizontal,  diagonal, center, etc).  I just love how every year there is that 1 reindeer facing the wrong way!

We made elves, along with an "Elf to do list" from an idea I got from Deanna Jump's website.  I just laugh when I look at how stressed out the one elf looks!  Kind of reminds me of myself around the holidays! :)

 Each month we make a "quilt" from different TLC type art activities.  This month's features the TLC Santa, and the Little Giraffe's Tree.  So Cute!

 Not to forget about Hannukkah, in order to try to broaden the students culturally (I work in a very NON-diverse area) some of the things we did was watch an Elmo Hannukah clip  and learned how to play the dreidle game.  The kids LOVED it.  Want a copy of the game, click HERE.  Not sure where I originally got the dreidles from... my ex-husaband is Jewish!

And... just because I love when kids surprise you...  We had pretzels for snack one day, and 1 of my students decided to eat them in the shape of the alphabet!  I you look carefully, and use a little imagination, you can actually make out each letter!

Well, I hope to get some school stuff done over break (like lesson plans for next week!) but also want to find some time to relax as well. Hope your holidays are enjoyable, relaxing and refreshing! 


  1. I am your newest follower! Welcome to blogging, it seems that you already have the creative hang of it!

    Faithful in First

  2. hi Jenny Love your blog. I tried to download the gifts for shopping and it says I don't have permission to do this. How can I access this? I do a similar activity with my K kiddos and have them sound out the words and write as well. Thanks for sharing.

  3. I'm a new follower and LOVE your blog! Can't wait to purchase your special snacks packet on TpT!

  4. Hi Kim! Thanks for stopping by! As you can tell I am new to all this as I realized (thanks to your comment) that I didn't click on "share" for all the google docs I posted! I just assumed that if the link was there, you could see it! You know what they say about assuming... :) Anyways, I think I have fixed the problem. If it persists, let me know and I will try again!

  5. Thanks for being a super blogger! I've nominated you for a Versatile Blogger. Stop by! Little Priorities

  6. What a wonderful blog! I have nominated your blog for an award! Hop over and read all about it!

    Mrs. Krull
    Of Primary Importance